The 2019 Panini Prizm Basketball set has forty different parallels. When breaking cards it isn’t always obvious which parallels are the best pulls.
Panini prints the sequence on some parallels so we know for instance that only 5 Black Gold Prizm and 25 Green Pulsar were produced. It is pretty obvious which of these parallels is the best pull, but almost half the parallels have no print run numbers. Which of those are worth the most?
This article will break down the most valuable parallels, predict the print runs on non-sequence parallels, and estimate the value of 1/1 parallels.
Not every player is created equal. Every Zion Williamson card will be worth more than almost every Aaron Gordon card, regardless of parallel. The best way to compare parallels then is to calculate the multiple relative to the base card.
For example, Trae Young [Base] card is $7 right now and Trae Young [Orange Ice] is $17. For Trae Young, people are paying 2.42 times more for Orange Ice than they are for the base card.
Using sales data for every 2019 Prizm NBA card we can calculate the multiples for every player and parallel and then find the avererage multiple for that parallel.
All values and multiples in this article are based on ungraded cards. Basketball card price data was provided by SportsCardPro.com.
Below is an infographic showing the multiples for each parallel.
How to Use Price Multiples
Even if a parallel has never sold for a particular player, you can estimate the value of your card. You just need to know the value of the base card and the multiple from above.
For example, no Stephen Curry [White Sparkle] cards have sold recently on eBay. The base card is worth $1.60. White Sparkle multiple is 99.25. So ungraded White Sparkle card would be worth about $158.80.
You might have noticed the 1/1 parallels above (Black Prizm, Black Shimmer, Nebula) show no multiple because there isn’t enough data available to calculate them. Keep reading to find out how we can estimate the value for any player’s 1/1 cards too.
Estimating Print Runs
These are the Panini published print runs and calculated multiples for all 2019 Prizm NBA parallels.
|[Black Gold Prizm]||5||141.45|
|[Fast Break Prizm Neon Green]||5||141.06|
|[Choice Prizm Green]||8||83.13|
|[Choice Tiger Stripe]||?||68.10|
|[Fast Break Prizm Bronze]||20||46.82|
|[Choice Prizm Red]||88||26.63|
|[Fast Break Prizm Pink]||50||16.37|
|[Fast Break Prizm Purple]||75||16.15|
|[Choice Blue, Yellow, Green]||?||14.91|
|[Fast Break Prizm Blue]||175||11.51|
|[Fast Break Prizm Red]||125||11.13|
|[Fast Break Prizm]||?||5.25|
|[Red, White, Blue Prizm]||?||1.27|
Some of these parallels like White Sparkle and Tiger Stripe have no printed sequence but they sell for a big premium. Either demand for these parallels is really high or these parallels were produced in smaller quantities than some known print run parallels.
Let’s see if we can estimate the print run for White Sparkle, Tiger Stripe, and other unknown production parallels.
If we chart the above parallels where we know BOTH the print run and multiple we can visually compare the two numbers.
The higher the print run the lower the multiple (upper left corner of chart). The lower the print run the higher the multiple (lower right corner).
We can run some fancy math (regression) to calculate a line that best matches the data. See chart.
With this trendline, if we know the price multiple we can estimate the print run.
For Tiger Stripe, the price multiple is 68.10. So the estimated print run is 32. There are roughly 32 Tiger Stripe cards printed for every player in the 2019 Prizm Basketball set.
The table below shows the estimated print run for every parallel.
|Parallel||Estimated Print Run|
|[Choice Tiger Stripe]||32|
|[Choice Blue, Yellow, Green]||201|
|[Fast Break Prizm]||718|
|[Red, White, Blue Prizm]||4,070|
We can see how reasonable the estimates are by checking the PSA 2019 Prizm population reports.
For Zion Williamson, PSA graded 11 Orange Prizm cards and there are 49 made, which means PSA has graded 22% of the Orange Prizm Zion cards. For all known population parallels, PSA has graded 20-35%. We would expect our estimates to be similar and it turns out they are.
We estimate Pink Ice has 1,536 cards in existence. PSA says Zion Williamson [Pink Ice] has total population of 369, which, using our estimates, would mean 26% of Pink Ice were graded. Ruby Wave is 25% graded. Blue/Green/Yellow is 33% graded. All very reasonable estimates.
The only prediction that is way off is Silver Prizm. We estimate 1,304 exist but PSA has graded 3,019. Our predictions assume demand is the same for all parallels and only supply changes but in reality people might like some parallels more than others. Silver Prizm is really popular so the multiplier people pay for it is higher than we’d expect based on supply alone. See more discussion on this in the limitations section at bottom of the article.
Estimating the Value of 1/1 Parallels
By definition, the 1/1 parallels are very rare. Most of them never come up for sale because the single owner holds onto them or they are sitting in a sealed hobby box somewhere.
Using the same equation we did to estimate the print run, we can reverse it to estimate the price multiple.
The estimated multiplier for each 1/1 parallel is 1,154. If you pull a Black Prizm, you can estimate the value by multiplying the base card value by 1,154.
For example, Michael Porter Jr base card is worth $3.15. His Black Prizm card would be worth about $3,635. Zion Williamson base is worth $203. Zion [Black Shimmer] card would be worth roughly $234,260.
For the few collectors with 1/1 parallel cards. Congratulations.
Limitations With Our Estimates
Like any model that takes a complex subject and simplifies it, our estimates are not perfect and do not predict the price for every card with 100% accuracy.
Our model assumes supply is constant for every parallel regardless of the player. We assume there are just as many Zion [Hyper] cards as their are Dion Waiters [Hyper]. It’s possible that Panini prints fewer parallels for some players and more for others.
Our model assumes demand is the same for every parallel and people only pay more for a parallel if it is more rare. In reality people have personal preferences and more people like Silver Prizm than they do Pink Pulsar.
We can actually use our print run estimates and PSA pop reports to visually see which parallels have high/low demand. The below chart shows the percent of cards that PSA has graded vs the production. The red colors are known production. Blue are our estimates. Any blue parallels that are really high are really high demand. Silver Prizm and Tiger Stripe.
Lastly, our model uses an average multiple. People might be willing to pay a higher multiple for hot rookies than they will for rookies who don’t pan out. In that case our model would under price the hottest/most popular players’ cards and over price the less popular players.